Challenge Heineken: Nico Rosberg, David Coulthard & Roberto Carlos take to the virtual F1 grid this weekend

One of F1’s biggest sponsors is sending the 2016 champion into battle this weekend!

Toby Durant by Toby Durant
f1 challenge heineken nico rosbergv4

Virtual Formula 1 has taken the spotlight this year in a big way.

While the surprising driver moves shook up the F1 grid for 2021 and attention starts to turn to F1 2020, this weekend sees a shocking F1 return in digital form…

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Nico Rosberg returns to F1 action

The 2016 World Drivers’ Champion Nico Rosberg will be taking part in this weekend’s virtual F1 event, Challenge Heineken.

Rosberg, who retired almost immediately after his WDC triumph, will be one of three former F1 drivers participating in this weekend’s event.

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BEAT YOU: Nico Rosberg beat Lewis Hamilton to the 2016 title

Rosberg will be joined by former McLaren and Red Bull driver David Coulthard, as well as ex-Red Bull driver Robert Doornbos. Brazilian footballing icon Roberto Carlos will also be joining the trio as Heineken ambassadors getting in on the action!

Challenge one: One v one

The first challenge will consist of a two-car, one-lap shoot-out, as one driver faces off against another. It’s best of three, so first driver to take two wins goes through.

Coulthard and Carlos will face off first around Interlagos, then Rosberg and Doornbos will face the same circuit. The winners will progress to the final, while the losers will go to a Third-place playoff race, both of which will be at the Red Bull Ring in Austria.

The winner gets two points, with the runner-up getting one.

Challenge two: Defending The Crown

The second challenge takes us to Abu Dhabi, the scene of Nico Rosberg’s emotional and dramatic WRC triumph with Mercedes. Here, our quartet will line up in reverse order of which they finished the previous event.

ICON: Roberto Carlos is a true great of the game

This five-lap race will see the four drivers battle it out for the win, with three points on offer for the win, two for second, and one for third.

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Challenge 3: Influencer Grid

Our final challenge will see a grid of 12 influencers and content creators take on Coulthard and Rosberg around a circuit yet to be determined. Viewers on Twitch will have the opportunity to decide the circuit with a vote that will go live once it’s announced, so keep your eyes peeled at the top of the show.

READ MORE: F1 2020 Game: Driver retirement & F2 promoted confirmed

This 25% race puts the duo at the front of the grid, and their challenge is to hold back the chasing pack. Once again, it’s three points for a win, two for second, and one for finishing in the top five. There’s also one bonus point on offer for the fastest lap, making a total of nine for the whole challenge.

How to watch

As ever, the virtual F1 event will be streamed live on Formula 1’s YouTube, Twitch, and Facebook channels.

The event will start at 6pm BST on Sunday, 17 May.

READ MORE: F1 2020 Pre-order: Price, Xbox, PS4, PC, editions, deals, early access & more

Toby Durant